Scanning a barcode will offer other informative applications besides price comparison. I view this as a wirelessCueCat.
The CueCat might not seem like a bad idea any more.
Engineers at Carnegie Mellon University are developing affordable scanning systems to give blind people greater independence in daily activities, such as cooking, grocery shopping or riding a bus.
Their system relies on devices available in any electronics store, including a cell phone, Bluetooth wireless headset and portable bar code scanner.
Here's how the Trinetra prototype works:
The blind person uses a bar code-reading pencil to scan a grocery item. The information is sent via the wireless headset to an Internet-enabled cell phone.
The phone communicates with a public database, which translates the bar code into a recognizable product name.
This name is relayed to the cell phone, where text-to-speech software articulates it into the headset.
Using this technology, Rossi can shop for groceries without the help of a friend or store clerk. He also can distinguish between products in his own refrigerator and kitchen cabinet